Can the police arrest you for having a spouse’s medication?

On Behalf of | Oct 12, 2022 | Drug Crimes

You share just about everything with your spouse, from your personal property to your daily schedule. The two of you also share household responsibilities. In theory, you may sometimes perform certain tasks on behalf of your spouse, and you have the legal authority to do so.

If your spouse recently got hurt in a car crash or in a work accident, their doctor may have prescribed them narcotic pain relievers. You could potentially pick up the prescription from the pharmacy for your spouse because you share insurance. Is it legal for you to transport medication that belongs to someone other than yourself?

You can only transport sealed packages

Unless you go to great pains to prevent having access to the medication in the vehicle, such as closing it in a lock box in your trunk, police officers will typically assume that you have control over anything they find on your person or right next to you in the vehicle.

If you transport medication for another person other than your minor children, police officers might assume that you intend to use that medication yourself or dispense it to others. With the exception of medication still sealed in the packaging provided by the pharmacy, any prescription medication for which you do not personally have a prescription could lead to possession charges.

Especially if the medication in question is a pain reliever or another drug with a high risk of abuse, police officers will very likely assume you took the medication from your spouse and intend to use it or distribute it to others. Although it is theoretically acceptable for you to pick up medication for family members from a pharmacy, it is legally risky to transport the medication for them after they have begun taking the medication.

Police officers may jump to the wrong conclusion

What seems like a potential drug crime could just be a mistake made by someone who simply wants to take good care of their spouse. Police officers are constantly on the lookout for crime, so they may interpret certain behaviors as criminal when there is truly no criminal intent behind them.

From challenging their interpretation of events to presenting digital evidence to the courts, there may be numerous strategies that can help those accused of a prescription drug offense fight back against those accusations. Considering all of your options is important if you want to avoid conviction while facing drug charges.